Fifty shades of green – An alternative Paddy’s Day soundtrack

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The Hardybucks - Westlife they ain't

The Rubberbandits – Westlife they ain’t

Offering an alternative to Louis Walsh’s endless parade of pretty boy ballads, Getintothis’ Emma Walsh (no relation) provides the only playlist you need this St Patrick’s Day.

Surely you must have noticed?

The string of plastic tricolours cluttering up the back bar in every pub, the leprechaun outfits front and centre in Smiffy’s windows, the offers on Guinness, Jamesons and any shot that can pass with a Baileys head. The cultural and religious feast of St Patrick has come around again and the drinks industry is handing out the usual parade of big hats and cheap drinks to get everyone suitably ossified and ridiculous looking. Being Irish for one day of the year is big business for the likes of Diageo. 

And the big Irish sell out doesn’t end there. Even a wayward glimpse at the music channels on St Patrick’s Day will show you where the big bucks are to be made, the fresh faced boybands and bouncy denim clad girls of the nineties and naughties, the American-Irish punk bands putting a tie round their heads and a heavy metal twist on traditional folk songs, and maybe, just maybe, you might catch sight of an actual fiddle or a bodhrán or an Aran jumper.

None of which will offer you a sincere intonation of what Irish music actually is these days. And don’t bother looking to the charts – you’ll only find the same tripe there as you will here. As ever, you only find the music worth listening to when you steer away from the mainstream, the stuff that doesn’t impress the tourists or package itself nicely to the hormonal teenage girls of the western world.

So just a little off the beaten path, we give you an alternative soundtrack to the usual crap you’ll hear blasted in every over-packed bar today. Some new bands yet to make their break across the pond, some a little longer in the tooth who never quite made it, some familiar faces, some frankly weird faces (See above – coming to an Everyman stage near you in May) and even a bit of the ‘diddley ah’ music as the aul fella calls it.

So whether you’re gearing up for a day on the beers or slumped in an office clock watching the hours away until Happy Hour, may we present the alternative soundtrack to your St Patrick’s Day.

Sláinte folks.

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